Additions bring joy at YMCA

Published 6:10 pm Monday, January 29, 2007

By By Matthew Nascone
Ever since the playground at the Atmore Area YMCA and Community Center was damaged when hurricanes Ivan and Dennis ravaged Atmore, Atmore Y branch director Tammy Graham has wanted to give the children something to play on.
"We had to take the old playground down a while back because it was ant-infested," Graham said. "And we started looking for playgrounds and when we received the McMillan and Neal donations we went out and looked at a bunch of playgrounds and found they were incredibly expensive and weighed more than we could afford."
So the commercial search for a playground was over, but the expertise of one YMCA employee was used to build the new playground.
"Johnny (Rodgers) said he would build us one," Graham said. "So the money was used to buy the supplies he needed and to pay the overtime. We looked around on the Internet for some ideas of how we wanted it and Johnny designed it."
The work on the playground began many weeks ago, but not on site.
"Johnny, Ross and Johnny's father-in-law, Dennis Irwin, built it on weekends for the last month over at Johnny's house," Graham said. "And last weekend they brought the pieces out here and sunk them in the ground and started putting it together."
The playground is not completely done, but the biggest building chunk of the project is done. Still to come is a four-swing swing set and the final paint job for the pieces. And when completed the playground will have swings, a slide, monkey bars and two towers with stairs. Graham said the group made sure they are within playground safety guidelines with all the equipment.
Graham said Youth Leadership Atmore 2007 came to her a couple weeks ago and asked to help with the playground as their community project. And the children are ready to play on the playground.
"I know the kids have been looking out the windows and they are dying to get out there because they have been without a playground for awhile," Graham said. "And I am thrilled to have this because the kids need a place to jump around and have fun. Kids get bored doing the same thing
But the playground is not the only development the Y has going in the renovation effort. The brand new wooden floor in the building was recently completed and the nursery was painted and furnished with a new kitchen play set and some other new toys.
"The playground along with everything else we are doing around here I think the members are pleased to see we are making some progress and we are improving things," Graham said.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox